This topic has been burning inside of me for a while especially lately, with the hostility to women’s rights, and the attacks on Planned Parenthood causing the organization to be in danger of losing federal dollars based on them offering access to safe abortions, even though they do not use any federal money for abortions. Planned Parenthood does not only offer abortions, they offer cervical cancer screening, STD testing, birth control referral for adoption and education on healthy sexual activity.
I am in support of Planned Parenthood and I am a Christian who is pro-choice. Just because I am pro-choice does not mean I am pro-abortion. As a nurse I have worked with young women and girls who have become pregnant because of incest (with repeated pregnancies), rape, loneliness, heartache, self hatred and fear. I have also worked with women who had ectopic pregnancies and other life threatening circumstances that warrant terminating pregnancies.
Never did I meet a woman who was not torn up over her decision. And there it is: her decision. Not mine. Not yours. Not a Senator’s sitting on Capitol Hill. Hers. There in that very small counseling room, looking at that positive pregnancy test and knowing that she was going to make the hardest and worst decision of her whole life. And knowing that she will never be the same again.
Being a Christian means to live a life that strives to be Christ-like. I say strive because no one is perfect. In the bible, John 8 talks about an adulterous women that was bought to Jesus’ attention by (religious leaders) while he was writing a sermon in the dirt. They mentioned to him how she should be stoned to death. Jesus replied with, “let the one who is guiltless throw the first stone.” Then he began to continue to write in the dirt and they left one by one starting with the eldest without throwing a stone. Then Jesus asked her, “Has no one condemned you?” “No one sir,” she replied. “Neither do I condemn you,” said Jesus. “Go away, and from this moment sin no more.”
I do not advocate or encourage abortion, but I believe that our government must maintain the right to legal and safe abortion for women who want to end a pregnancy. Women must be allowed the right to make this decision between herself and her physician without the interference of any government entity. I believe that reproductive choice is a fundamental human right. Criminalizing abortion will not end abortion. Women will die just as they did before abortion was legalized.
We live in a tragically fallen, sinful world and unfortunately abortion is part of it. Sex without commitment (marriage) is part of it. Unplanned pregnancy is an unfortunate result of it. Criminalizing abortion will not change these facts. The return of Christ and His reign on Earth will change these facts. Until then I believe that we must educate our young women and men (in homes, schools, and churches) about healthy sexual activity and the consequences of sex outside of marriage. We must work diligently to improve the self esteem of teenage girls so they do not seek acceptance through sex. We must provide affordable birth control to women of all races and economic classes. We must provide single women with economic and social support to make parenthood a feasible option. And we must reach the world for Christ so that women will have a foundation and support system to help them choose not to have an abortion.
I do not take this issue lightly because my husband and I struggle with infertility. It took us over ten years to become pregnant naturally and because of this I do not take my fertility for granted but as a gift from God. But my pain does not give me the right to take away another woman’s choice. It is hard and it doesn’t make sense, but God is good and his forgiveness and mercy are unfathomable.
Previously published on forequalitygroup.com